Online sites and apps are responsible for more relationships than any other method. Singles use online dating sites as their favorite way to select potential suitors, and they are often registered with multiple sites at once. While these provide an efficient and quick way to find love, online dating sites are collecting tons of personal data on each registrant. Here are some ways that your online data may be being used. 

Targeted Marketing

Virtually every major retailer uses targeted marketing campaigns. These targeted ads show up on someone’s social media feed, in their search engine results, and as random advertisements when you’re online. Online dating sites may sell your information to these retailers and social media moguls to assist with the data points needed for their algorithms. Say, for example, that you indicate that your favorite food is avocados and that you love fun socks. You may soon start to see eerily specific targeted ads from retailers who sell printed socks (some of which may feature avocados). 

Identity Theft

Although some people may still be uncomfortable with the concept, most consumers have become accustomed to the nature of targeted marketing ads. Misuse of your identity is never an acceptable practice, but this may be happening to you right now. Unsavory characters troll dating apps and social media sites to learn about your likes, habits, and personal information that could be used to guess passwords and open new accounts. Some criminals even use information posted online to plan a burglary when you are out of the house. Take care and be cautious about what and when you post online.

Ongoing Data Learning

A surprising number of companies, organizations, and even the federal government are interested in your online dating data. Your personal profiles are used to anticipate behavior and patterns. Each time you make a predicted purchase, click on a targeted ad, or post about an event that was predicted for you, this information feeds into a data processor. Each confirming factor helps improve preset algorithms, posts, or actions to help programmers retool their predictions.

Whenever you are using a social media platform, giving information to a website, or opening up an online dating profile it is important to be aware of what you are posting online. While there is no cause for paranoia, it makes sense to protect your personal information and only share accurate information to keep yourself safe. Use MyLife’s Reputation Profile and Reputation Score to see how you look to potential dates, friends, and neighbors and control what information is out there. And, of course, you can go to MyLife and see anyone else’s Reputation Profile and Reputation Score to keep you and your family safe.